Media Release

Overseas job seekers plan ahead: Australia one of the most desired places to work

  • Australia ranked 12th most desired country in the world for overseas job hunters
  • Highest proportion of people living in Australia who were born overseas in 120 years
  • urges international visitors to plan ahead of face financial struggle before moving to Australia

September 6, 2014, SYDNEY – Australia is among the most desired countries to work in, with the highest proportion of people living in Australia who were born overseas in 120 years, according to new research by one of Australia’s biggest comparison websites

Australia was ranked the 12th most desired country to work in out of 54 countries, an analysis of job search data by found.

More than one in 10 job seekers globally are looking for work in Australia, and Australia is the third most popular country for oil and mining related jobs by those searching for work online. The research also showed that people in the United States, United Kingdom, India, New Zealand and Canada were most likely to search for jobs in Australia.

According to analysis of Australian Bureau of Statistics Labour Force data, there are almost 1 million more people working in Australia who were born overseas, with the biggest increase from Southern and Central Asia by 229 percent from 2001 to 2011. Those from Southern and Eastern Europe working in Australia were the only region to have declined, by 16 percent in the same period.

Growth in number of people born overseas working in Australia

Region20112001Difference% Difference
Oceania and Antarctica445,200310,600134,60043.34%
North West Europe884,000775,200108,80014.04%
Southern and Eastern Europe290,700345,800-55,100-15.93%
North Africa and the Middle East116,000110,3005,7005.17%
South-East Asia116,000110,3005,7005.17%
North-East Asia326,800139,100187,700134.94%
Southern and Central Asia351,000106,700244,300228.96%
Sub-Saharan Africa181,30092,40088,90096.21%
Total of workforce born overseas3,179,2002,252,000927,20041.17%

Source:, ABS Labour Force Australia

Use this table on your website:

Michelle Hutchison, Money Expert at, said she was not surprised by Australia’s popularity by overseas job seekers.

“This research is no surprise, as we’re seeing more people coming to Australia for working holidays. In fact, 16 percent more people came to Australia on a working holiday last year compared to the previous year, or over 32,000 more. There were over 258,000 people who were granted working holiday visas in the 202-13 financial year, compared to almost 223,000 in 2011-12.

“What's more, the latest figures show there are 3.2 million workers in Australia who were born overseas – that's 41 percent more or almost 1 million more than a decade ago (see table above).

“With the proportion of people living in Australia who were born overseas at the highest levels in 120 years (28 percent), these people are urged to plan ahead or face possible financial struggle when moving to Australia.

According to, 60 percent of Australia’s population growth last year was from net overseas migration, with the Australian government granting 4.7 million permanent and temporary visas during 2012-13 alone, an increase of 5.3 percent from the previous year .

“More people are coming to Australia every year to live, work, study or travel and it’s clear that many of these people need help with finding the right information all in the one place.”

The research follows the launch of the Moving to Australia hub, an initiative part of MoneySmart Week (September 1-7, 2014), to help those find free information and resources about living, studying, working and travelling in Australia. also released a Moving to Australia Report, which found that looking for work was the most difficult part of moving to Australia for the majority of over 1,000 survey respondents, with almost half (45 percent) finding it tough to secure a job.

While over one in four (26 percent) found language was the hardest to tackle, almost one in five (18 percent) said organising finances was the most difficult, and accommodation was the hardest for one in 10 respondents.

Generation Y (18-34 year-olds) found looking for work the more difficult than any other age group, while it was the least difficult for Gen X (35-54 year-olds).

State by state, it was the toughest to find work for those living in Tasmania than other states, with about two in three (65 percent) struggling to find a job.

“Whether you’re planning to move to Australia or already living here, it’s not too late to learn about Australia’s banking industry and how you can save money by choosing the right products.

“Don’t let your lack of knowledge ruin your trip to Australia. Jump onto the Moving to Australia hub and find out what you need to know about working, studying, travelling and living in Australia,” said Mrs Hutchison.


For further information


The information in this release is accurate as of the date published, but rates, fees and other product features may have changed. Please see updated product information on's review pages for the current correct values.

About us

More than 3 million Australians turn to every month to save money, time and make important life choices. We compare virtually everything from credit cards, phone plans, health insurance, travel deals and much more.

Our free service is 100% independently-owned by two Australians: Fred Schebesta and Frank Restuccia. Since launching in 2006, we’ve helped our users make more than 17 million decisions.

We continue to expand and launch around the globe, and now operate in the United States and United Kingdom. For further information visit

Ask a question
Go to site